Polish energy group PGE is continuing its project to modernise one of the world’s largest fossil fuel-fired power plants, awarding Alstom a EUR160 million power plant retrofit contract.

Alstom Power is to modernise Unit 6 at the Belchatow power plant in Poland to increase its output, improve its efficiency and extend its lifetime. The plant – with 12 units and a total power output of 4440 MW – is the largest fossil fuel fired power plant in Europe.

The retrofit of Unit 6 will reduce emissions of NOx by 50 per cent and achieve a 41 per cent increase in efficiency, according to Alstom. Emissions of CO2 will fall by 400 000 tonnes/year.

The scope of the modernisation covers the reconstruction of the boiler and its auxiliary equipment, replacement of high pressure and intermediate-pressure part of the turbine, increasing power output of the generator and installation of new high-pressure heaters. The contract follows earlier contracts won by Alstom to modernize the low pressure parts of 12 turbines at Belchatow.

Alstom also recently announced plans to install carbon capture and storage (CCS) technology at Unit 12 of Belchatow.

The modernisation of Belchatow will enable the plant to meet emission requirements imposed by EU directives, and will also improve reliability and availability.

“It is an essential project both for PGE Bełchatów Power Plant S.A. and for the entire Polish Energy Group,” said Krzysztof Domagała, President of PGE Bełchatów Power Plant S.A. “It will allow for a considerable modernisation of infrastructure in Unit 6, which will not only increase its power output and efficiency, but will also extend lifetime. In addition, a very important point is that the emissions of NOx and CO2 will be limited.”